The government of the Republic of Moldova is reportedly ready to hand over the building of the former theological seminary in Chișinău to the Romanian Orthodox Church-affiliated Metropolis of Bessarabia.
The final step is for a draft law, tabled by several deputies of the ruling party, to be ratified by Parliament.
The assets of the Metropolis of Bessarabia were wrongly confiscated and nationalized by the Soviet regime after World War II when Moldova became part of the now-defunct USSR.
The draft law has also been signed by the Moldovan parliament’s speaker, Igor Grosu, who was received in Bucharest last month by His Beatitude Patriarch Daniel.
In a statement on Facebook, the President of the Chamber of Deputies, Marcel Ciolacu, said that after 30 years of discrimination and injustice, justice is finally being done for the Metropolis of Bessarabia.
“It is a historical and moral reparation for the injustice done to the Metropolis of Bessarabia, which was banned when the Soviets came to power and whose property was confiscated, nationalized, or destroyed by the communists,” Ciolacu wrote.
“In the future, the Metropolis of Bessarabia – under the protection of the Romanian Orthodox Church, will occupy its well-deserved place in society and will be able to fully contribute to the formation of the spiritual and cultural education of the citizens of the Republic of Moldova,” he added.
During the meeting with the Moldovan parliament’s speaker in February, the Patriarch of Romania reiterated the request that the Moldovan state authorities retrocede the buildings of the former Faculty of Orthodox Theology and the former Theological Seminary in Chișinău.
He also demanded the compensating assignment of a building in return for the previous headquarters of the Metropolis of Bessarabia, which was dismantled during the communist era, and the current building of the Government of the Republic of Moldova was constructed in its stead.
The Patriarch of Romania requested equal treatment for the Metropolis of Bessarabia so as to allow its clerics to provide religious assistance in the army, penitentiaries, and hospitals, as well as to be invited to official events to which clerics from the other church structure on the territory of the Republic of Moldova are invited.
Photo source: Wikimedia / ©De la Loraine